FMHS Info Swarm

January & February 2018

8th Grade Curriculum Fair

Rising 9th grade students that will attend FMHS next year will be invited to attend the Curriculum Fair, which is scheduled for Thursday, February 8th. Beginning at 6:30 pm parents and students will attend a brief information session held in the FMHS auditorium where they will hear from Mr. Christopher and meet other important 9th grade figures (Dr. Walker, Ms. Gulledge, Ms. Hill and Officer Wilkins). While one focus of this event is to help ease the transition to high school, another equally important goal is to introduce students and families to the various course offerings that will be available to them in high school. Core content area courses and electives alike have an opportunity to promote their classes and make connections with future students.

Summer Professional Development Opportunities

There is still time to volunteer for these incredible professional development opportunities. Please email me if you would like to attend either of these events. If you are undecided I can provide a personal testimonial for both conferences.



SC Midlands Summit--The SC Midlands Summit is a two day conference focusing on the integration of technology into the school and classroom with a focus on using Google Apps for Education, learning environments, innovation, transformation, 21st century skills and mobile devices for student learning. Over 130 unique sessions will be offered!


June 13th-14th, 2018

Blythewood, SC

Click here for more details


High Schools That Work (HSTW) Staff Development Conference--The HSTW Staff Development Conference provides a platform for K-12 practitioners to share innovative and proven school improvement strategies. Hear how teams of teachers, counselors and leaders prepared academic and career and technical education students with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in college and the 21st-century workplace.


July 11th-14th, 2017

Orlando, Florida

Click here for more details

Food for Thought

SLO Update

All 1st semester SLO teachers will be conducting midpoint/final conferences collaboratively in the coming week. While this is not the ideal approach to SLOs we thought it would be the most teacher friendly manner in which to wrap everything up. When you come to the conference you should:

  • have all pre-test, post-test, and performance task data entered in the your Power Teacher Pro Gradebook and hopefully that data has migrated to Classroom Mosaic as well
  • bring 3 pieces of student work (representative of high, average, and low performance) from a progress monitoring assignment
  • be ready to discuss how you tracked student progress and adjusted instruction to promote growth.


This is not anything to fear or stress over. It will be a friendly conversation about how you taught to maximize student growth.


Aside from what is mentioned above, only teachers of yearlong SLO courses and 2nd semester SLO courses still have additional work remaining. For these teachers, their respective SLO administrator will be following up regarding midpoint conferences soon.


As I said last year, I know that the technology isn't always our friend and the format has been ever changing the past several years, but again I am thankful for your positive attitude in taking care of this responsibility. The early read on 2018-2019 is that SLOs will continue in much the same manner next year as they did this year. Hopefully we won't change platforms or requirements next year and can start to establish some normalcy moving forward.

AP & Teacher Cadet Day and Night

· The meeting for students and parents to discuss Advanced Placement and Teacher Cadet Courses will be held on Thursday, February 22nd at 6:30 pm. (Please note the change from the original date of February 15th that was listed in the faculty handbook.) The meeting will begin with Mr. Christopher addressing interested parents and students in the auditorium, followed by breakout sessions along the E hall.

· The evening session will be preceded by an “AP Rally” during the school day, where Mr. Christopher will give a brief description of AP course work and explain the benefits of enrolling in these courses. Current senior AP students will advertise to prospective AP students by wearing a promotional AP t-shirt during the day.

Great Teacher Books For The New Year

Scheduling Timeline

The start of each new semester brings with it lots of questions about student schedules. With all of this fresh on our memory, I thought this might be the perfect opportunity to review the scheduling timeline to ensure we are all on the same page when addressing questions and concerns from students and parents. Please use this information to help students understand when they can request changes to their schedule. As always there are exceptions that are made for extenuating circumstances that we feel are in the student's best interest.


IGPs (September-February)--The bulk of a school counselor's year is dedicated to individual graduation plan (IGP) meetings. Each year counselors meet with parents and students individually to review their 4 year plan of courses they wish to take before graduating. During this meeting counselors enter the first draft of a student's schedule into Power School.


  • This includes the students 8 primary requests (at least 4 academic core and 4 electives) as well as 3 or 4 alternate courses that the student agrees to take should they not be scheduled for all of their primary requests.
  • The courses students select as alternates are very real possibilities for their schedule and should be selected with careful consideration.


Course Request Verification (March)--Counselors print a copy of each student's course requests and send them home to be signed by the student and their parents.



  • Parent and student signatures serve as validation that the student is indeed requesting these primary and alternate courses.



Schedule Change Request Window (April-May)--Students may request schedule changes--both academic and elective--through the school counseling office until the end of the school year. This is really the last opportunity that students have to make an elective change.


  • Students may freely request to add or drop an elective, add or drop an AP course for which they have been recommended, and request level changes for core academic courses.


Schedule Creation and Revision (June-July)--Schedules are officially created in Power School. Counselors and administrators review student schedules and attempt to troubleshoot issues before these schedule are shared with students.



Schedules Go Live in Power School (End of July/First of August)--Student schedules are released in Parent Portal for student and families to view. This displays both the course and the instructor to which a student has been assigned.


Conflict Resolution (Early August)--Students with scheduling issues may make an appointment to address the concern with their counselor. Students may not make elective changes at this time.


  • Students may request changes to fill holes in their schedule, address sequencing issues (e.g. a level 3 before a level 4 course), and request academic level changes.
  • Counselors will not attempt to change the electives of students that were scheduled into alternates because they are courses which the students selected and signed off acknowledging the request.



2nd Semester Schedule Change Request Window (November)--Students may request academic level changes and resolve schedule issues necessary for promotion or graduation. In general, students may not make elective changes at this time.


This timeline allows students the majority of the school year (from their IGP through the end of the school) to request the schedule they desire. Once the school year begins, student schedules are pretty much locked. This is done not as a punishment to students but to hold them accountable for the requests they make, since decisions about the number of sections offered and staffing are made using this data. Hopefully sharing this insight with students will help them choose to give a thoughtful consideration to the courses they request each spring.

Quote of the Month

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Calendar of Events

January


  • January 3 FMHS Family Meeting--3:55 pm
  • January 3 Grades Due in Power School--3:40 pm
  • January 4 Homeroom--8:40 am
  • January 5 Report Card Distribution--2nd Block
  • January 10 PSG--Planning Periods (Canceled)
  • January 16 Leadership Team Meeting--3:55 pm
  • January 17 Department Meetings--3:55 pm
  • January 19 Students of the Month Recognition--10:20 am
  • January 22 School Improvement Council--4:30 pm
  • January 24 CIT Meetings--3:40 pm
  • January 25 M4 Midterm Distribution--All Blocks

February

  • February 7 FMHS Family Meeting--3:55 pm
  • February 8 Curriculum Fair--6:30 pm
  • February 8 Sophomore RIng Meeting--2:10 pm
  • February 14 PSG--Planning Periods
  • February 16 Students of the Month Recognition--10:20 am
  • February 16 End of the M4 Grading Period
  • February 20 Leadership Team Meeting--3:55 pm
  • February 21 ACT/SAT Workshop--All Day for Participating Students
  • February 21 Department Meetings--3:55 pm
  • February 22 AP Day/Night--TBA (Day) & 6:30 pm (Night)
  • February 26 M4 Grades Due in Power School--8:40 am
  • February 26 School Improvement Council--4:30 pm
  • February 27 ACT Test Administration--1st & 2nd Blocks
  • February 28 CIT Meetings--3:40 pm
  • February 28 Report Card Distribution--2nd Block